Google’s John Mueller said on Twitter “I don’t think we keep track of order of links on a page.” I found that interesting in that Google does treat links to the same destination with different anchor text differently. Although, it is hard to know exactly what John means by “keep track of.”
The question John was answering was when “having a link in the header versus the footer, what link does Googlebot look (read) at first?” John responded “I don’t think we keep track of order of links on a page. If anything, that would be an implementation detail and not something optimizable.”
I don’t think we keep track of order of links on a page. If anything, that would be an implementation detail and not something optimizable.
— ???? John ???? (@JohnMu) October 26, 2021
So then Gianluca Fiorelli brings up a Google patent named Reasonable Surfer that says “it value more links if they are in prominent sections like header navigation and editorial content, and less in others like footer or sidebar,” Fiorelli explained.
John responded “I haven’t actually read it :-). Does it mention anything about the order in which links are processed? (I realize the question might be more in the direction “importance”) FWIW it’s also always worth keeping in mind that documents/patents aren’t necessarily being used like that.”
Anyway, this is an interesting conversation that I wanted to highlight.
Forum discussion at Twitter.